A good question lately! Once there was a rather large dust-up when it was disclosed that a major cruise line had given away some free cruises to a core group of its fans who posted regularly on a large cruise community site. There were many cries of “foul” and “reverse censorship”. While this may have been blown a bit out of proportion, it does open the door to a question lots of novice cruisers ask. And the question is “Should I trust the reviews I read on sites like Cruise Critic?” The answer is Yes and No.
Why the ambiguity? Because the most important thing to remember that what you are reading is just one person (or couple’s) opinion about a particular ship, cruise line or service amenity. Have you ever gone to a shore side restaurant that a friend raves about and found it to be very disappointing? I think we all have. And what about that fabulous plumber who was recommended strongly? The one who broke the pipe and flooded your new carpet? Oops.
So, it is best to consider these reviews with a note of caution. They are good for general trends and recommendations and certainly provide some insider tips. Generally, if there are a large number of reviews and all or most of them are negative on a topic, there is likely to be some underlying cause.
The fact that 80% of all people who cruise indicate they will sail again points out that if you work with a knowledgeable travel agent and he or she matches your needs with the most suitable ship, it is almost inevitable that you will have a great vacation!
How relevant to you find cruise reviews to be?